About the Site
Regional Youth Detention Centers (RYDCs) are secure short-term centers operated by the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ). RYDCs are for youths awaiting trial in Juvenile or Superior Court, or awaiting a community placement more suitable for their needs. Candler Contextual Education I students assist in establishing hope, a commitment to community, and the duty to care by supporting positive change through youth accountability and responsible youth leadership and service. As Chaplain interns, students do this with particular attention to the disciplines of prayer, study, meditation and service as a lifelong commitment.
Metro Regional Youth Detention Center (RYDC) provides temporary, secure care and supervision to youth who have been charged with offenses or who have been adjudicated delinquent and are awaiting placement. In addition, youth who have been committed to the custody in Metro RYDC or any DJJ facility are sometimes placed there while awaiting treatment in a community program or a long-term facility.
Chaplaincy Services supports the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice mission through spiritual guidance, counseling, education and crisis intervention to youth and staff. Its vision is “Building Youth for the future through teamwork and community partnership.”
Dr. Joel LeMon will be the faculty co-leader of the spring integrative seminar for Regional Youth Detention Centers students.
Teaching and Site Supervisor
Chaplain Emily Kelly is the NW/SW/SE Regional Chaplain for the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice. She began her journey at DJJ in 2015 as a Contextual Education I Intern at Metro RYDC. She graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Bachelor of Science in Psychology, then earned her Master of Divinity from Candler School of Theology. She is currently a Provisional Deacon in the United Methodist Church.
Con Ed I Student Requirements for Metro Regional Youth Detention Center
Students will serve as chaplain interns, providing spiritual care for youth and staff at the Metro Regional Youth Detention Center. Chaplain interns will help develop innovative models of chaplaincy suitable for the current constraints of distance and safety. Work may include facilitating small group meetings for RYDC youth, individual pastoral care meetings, and other innovative strategies. This site is an opportunity to be a part of frontline chaplaincy innovations in response to rapidly changing conditions. Site work will begin in person and is expected to continue in person as DJJ policy and public health guidance permit.
- Con Ed I at Metro Regional Youth Detention Center also includes a fall semester reflection group, led by Rev. Emily Kelly, and a spring semester integrative seminar.
- Students who enroll in Metro Regional Youth Detention Center as their Con Ed I selection are strongly encouraged to also enroll in the Intro to Pastoral Care course in the fall or spring semester.
Additional Requirements & Accessibility
In addition to the criminal background check Candler requires of all admitted students, this site requires an additional criminal background check administered by the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice, completion of the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice application and online orientation, and fingerprinting. Because of DJJ policy, students who have pending or unresolved legal charges are not eligible to work at this site.